There is a part of FPU that is very hard for me: when you have members who have a “hole to shovel” ration problem. This simply means that their income alone is not going to get them out of their current debt situation.
The reason that this is difficult for me is because more often than not, these members have lost hope and some have simply resigned themselves to their current situation.
What can they do? It’s time to get creative!
Old Fashion Garage Sale
This is one of my favorites because it can be played several ways. In my last class, I had a member hold two garage sales and she unloaded over $1000 worth of Japanese Furniture. This wasn’t your typical garage sale where you are nickel and diming over old clothing, but she came back to class absolutely GLOWING!
Garage Sales might not be your thing, but, how about selling stuff on Craig’s List or EBay? It is amazing what you can unload.
What about combining the two? My neighbor has collected quite a few bicycles from garage sales and fixed them up and resold them. By low, sell high!
As Dave would say, “Sell so much stuff, the kids think they are next!”
Part Time Job
Sometimes the answer to getting more money to pay off debt is to look at taking a part time job. It might not be a permanent solution, but if it helps you pay of debt, the sacrifice is worth the time.
A guy in one our classes went to Sears to pick up part time work for the holiday season. They asked him to come on full time as a manager. You never know what opportunities are waiting for you!
Finding Your Career
Have you ever had a job where you worked a lot of hours (50 – 70) but made crappy money? Or, where you are salaried for 40 hours, but have to work nearly 60 hours a week (and none of those extra hours are ever paid out)?
Is that a good employer? It might be time to have a talk with them to adjust the compensation to reflect the work. If not, you might need to really consider your position. I would never recommend that you quit a job, especially if you do not have something to go towards. But, you might want to start putting out feelers.
But, what if you are in the wrong field all together?
I recommend that you check out Dan Miller’s site, 48 Days. It is based on his book “48 Days Till the Work You Love.” In the book, the author is not showing you how to get “another job,” but about finding the work you love (your calling). This is another book that I highly recommend, but it is not a book you can just read. You have to work your way through it.
When couple start off in this situation, they often just don’t know what they are going to do – they feel hopeless. It is really awesome to see ideas spark in their heads as they go through FPU and say “Hey, I got nothing else to loose” and try some of the crazy ideas we discuss.
It is really inspiring to me when you see these very same couples complete the thirteen week course winning!